General Psychology

Course Number: PSY 201A
Transcript Title: General Psychology
Created: September 1, 2012
Updated: June 11, 2019
Total Credits: 4
Lecture Hours: 40
Lecture / Lab Hours: 0
Lab Hours: 0
Satisfies Cultural Literacy requirement: Yes
Satisfies General Education requirement: Yes
Grading options: A-F (default), P-NP, audit
Repeats available for credit: 0

Prerequisites

MTH 20 or equivalent placement test scores. Prerequisite/concurrent: WR 121.

Course Description

Surveys the major concepts, theoretical perspectives, empirical findings, and historical trends in scientific re-search, biological psychology, sensation and perception, learning theory, memory, language, cognition, consciousness, and human development. Provides an overview of popular trends, examines the overarching themes of heredity vs. environment, stability vs. change, and free will vs. determinism, and emphasizes the sociocultural approach which assumes that gender, culture, and ethnicity are essential to understanding behavior, thought, and emotion. PSY 201A and 202A are not sequential and may be taken in any order. Prerequisites: MTH 20 or equivalent placement test scores. Prerequisite/concurrent: WR 121. Audit available.

Intended Outcomes

Upon successful completion students should be able to:

  1. Articulate how psychological research adheres to ethical and scientific principles, and communicate the difference between personal views and scientific evidence in understanding behavior.
  2. Delineate the credentials, skills, and experiences required for a career path in psychology and identify broad career opportunities associated with the various subfields of psychology at different educational levels.
  3. Recognize and respect human diversity while anticipating that psychological explanations may vary across populations and contexts, and exhibit sensitivity to feelings, emotions, motives, and attitudes regarding specific behavioral concerns.
  4. Analyze personal lifestyle and apply problem-solving techniques to situations while understanding the limitations of one’s psychological knowledge and skills, recognizing that ethically complex situations can develop in the application of psychological principles.
  5. Evaluate public and private assumptions concerning individual and group differences using a global and multifaceted sociocultural approach.

Alignment with Institutional Core Learning Outcomes

Major 1. Communicate effectively using appropriate reading, writing, listening, and speaking skills. (Communication)

Major

2. Creatively solve problems by using relevant methods of research, personal reflection, reasoning, and evaluation of information. (Critical thinking and Problem-Solving)

Not addressed

3. Extract, interpret, evaluate, communicate, and apply quantitative information and methods to solve problems, evaluate claims, and support decisions in their academic, professional and private lives. (Quantitative Literacy)

Major

4. Use an understanding of cultural differences to constructively address issues that arise in the workplace and community. (Cultural Awareness)

Minor

5. Recognize the consequences of human activity upon our social and natural world. (Community and Environmental Responsibility)

To establish an intentional learning environment, Core Learning Outcomes (CLOs) require a clear definition of instructional strategies, evidence of recurrent instruction, and employment of several assessment modes.

Major Designation

  1. The outcome is addressed recurrently in the curriculum, regularly enough to establish a thorough understanding.
  2. Students can demonstrate and are assessed on a thorough understanding of the outcome.
    • The course includes at least one assignment that can be assessed by applying the appropriate CLO rubric.

Minor Designation

  1. The outcome is addressed adequately in the curriculum, establishing fundamental understanding.
  2. Students can demonstrate and are assessed on a fundamental understanding of the outcome.
    • The course includes at least one assignment that can be assessed by applying the appropriate CLO rubric.

Outcome Assessment Strategies

Students will demonstrate achievement of these outcomes by any of the following:

  1. Written assignments designed to promote integration of class material with personal reflection and experience.
  2. Written or oral assignments designed to stimulate critical thinking.
  3. Multiple choice, short answer, and essay questions that require integration, application, and critical examination of material covered in class.
  4. Active participation in class discussion.
  5. In-class participation in individual and group exercises, activities, or class presentations.
  6. Design and completion of research projects.
  7. Service learning activities.
  8. Participation in online discussions and/or completion of assignments through electronic media.

Texts and Materials

Spielman, R.M. (2018). Psychology. Open Stax, Rice University

Course Activities and Design

The determination of teaching strategies used in the delivery of outcomes is generally left to the discretion of the instructor. Here are some strategies that you might consider when designing your course: lecture, small group/forum discussion, flipped classroom, dyads, oral presentation, role play, simulation scenarios, group projects, service learning projects, hands-on lab, peer review/workshops, cooperative learning (jigsaw, fishbowl), inquiry based instruction, differentiated instruction (learning centers), graphic organizers, etc.

Course Content (Themes, Concepts, Issues and Skills)

  1. Articulate how psychological research adheres to ethical and scientific principles, and communicate the difference between personal views and scientific evidence in understanding behavior.
    • inductive vs deductive reasoning;
    • quantitative & qualitative approaches to research and the ethics involved;
    • the use of theories to explain both consistencies and inconsistencies in human behaviors.
  2. Delineate the credentials, skills, and experiences required for a career path in psychology and identify broad career opportunities associated with the various subfields of psychology at different educational levels.
    • psychology vs psychiatry;
    • various fields and levels of therapy;
    • various fields of psychology and their intended clients;
    • education required and the hierarchy of work in psychology.
  3. Recognize and respect human diversity while anticipating that psychological explanations may vary across populations and contexts, and exhibit sensitivity to feelings, emotions, motives, and attitudes regarding specific behavioral concerns.
    • cultural dimensions of psychological-based interpretations of behavior;
    • the effects of environmental and social contexts as they relate and influence human behavior;
    • self-reflection and introspection about one’s own behaviors in relationship to others.
  4. Analyze personal lifestyle and apply problem-solving techniques to situations while understanding the limitations of one’s psychological knowledge and skills, recognizing that ethically complex situations can develop in the application of psychological principles.
    • personal understanding of the limits in psychological self-analysis based upon this course;
    • recognizing one’s own biases and how it influences behavior interpretations of self and others;
    • using basic psychological tenets to better understand behaviors and the behavioral reactions of others.
  5. Evaluate public and private assumptions concerning individual and group differences using a global and multifaceted sociocultural approach.
    • being aware of cultural differences in behaviors and interpretations of said behaviors;
    • understanding environmental influences of behaviors of self and others;
    • recognizing the influence of groups on both group and individual behaviors and the included responses to those behaviors;
    • understanding and recognizing antecedents to specific behaviors and how it influences behavioral responses.